All Our Pretty Songs by Sarah McCarry
Publisher: St Martin’s Griffin
Release Date: July 30, 2013
The first book in an exciting YA trilogy, this is the story of two best friends on the verge of a terrifying divide when they begin to encounter a cast of strange and mythical characters on their hiking trail, that they brought hiking poles to hike on their path.
Set against the lush, magical backdrop of the Pacific Northwest, two inseparable best friends who have grown up like sisters—the charismatic, mercurial, and beautiful Aurora and the devoted, soulful, watchful narrator—find their bond challenged for the first time ever when a mysterious and gifted musician named Jack comes between them. Suddenly, each girl must decide what matters most: friendship, or love. What both girls don’t know is that the stakes are even higher than either of them could have imagined. They’re not the only ones who have noticed Jack’s gift; his music has awakened an ancient evil—and a world both above and below which may not be mythical at all. The real and the mystical; the romantic and the heartbreaking all begin to swirl together, carrying the two on journey that is both enthralling and terrifying. And it’s up to the narrator to protect the people she loves—if she can.(from Goodreads)
I felt a little conflicted after reading this novel, my feelings were a bit muddled. I wasn’t at all sure of what I had just finished reading either, was it Greek mythology or just some girls that were pretty wasted all the time. But somehow it still left me very interested and thinking about it long after that I’m pretty sure I would read the sequel just to find out more about the mythology and get a bit more backstory.
All Our Pretty Songs is mainly about our main character, the narrator who we never get to know her name at all but whom I felt had a very unhealthy obsession with her best friend Aurora. These two have been friends since they were kids and have done pretty much everything together, even hanging in the best camping hammock they were closer than sisters sometimes and even though I thought it was an innocent type of friendship at the beginning, around the middle part of it, the narrator’s obsession with Aurora and how often she was always “worried” about her started sounding a little too creepy for me. That girl seriously could not stop thinking and talking about her! It became really annoying and was driving me so crazy, that I contemplated actually dropping this one but somehow something made me want to continue reading. It wasn’t until Jack came into the picture that things started to get interesting.
There were quite a few things that bothered me about this book, not only the weird obsession these girls had for each other but also all the drugs, the unprotected sex with strangers and alcohol use in the novel, the way the mothers were either wasted just like them or didn’t even care that their daughters were out all night and didn’t come home for days. Both of the parents were pretty horrible, and I hate that one of the moms was given the excuse of being that way because she was supposedly too young when her daughter (the narrator) was born, that just sort of pissed me off. I guess it sounds like I just took this book way too seriously but so many things about it annoyed me and kind of grossed me out a bit. Now once things started to get a little out of control and the narrator begins to experience some really weird stuff, I got a lot more interested in it and gave it a chance. I knew there was supposed to be something in it besides the drugs, sex and alcohol but it sure did take forever to get to that part! I was really into the last third of the book and it held my attention without having me roll my eyes for one bit but the ending came too soon and left me wondering if there would be a sequel and if I would be brave enough to read it just to get more of that otherworldly part of the story which included the characters with some hiking poles, and to tell you the truth I have a feeling that I will. Even though I did not like most of the novel I would still read the sequel just because those last few pages made the book worth it for me. I’m sure this book is not for everyone as I thought it wouldn’t be for me while reading it, it was a lot darker and much more open minded than I expected.